What are like terms? Definition of like terms in mathematics.

Like terms definition:

Like terms are monomials that can only differ in their coefficients.

1. Like terms example:

5a

2a

2a

These two monomials differ in their coefficients. The letters (variables) and the exponents of the letters are the same.

2. Like terms example:

5ab^{2}c^{3}

2ab^{2}c^{3}

2ab

These two monomials differ in their coefficients. The letters (variables) and their exponents are the same. The coefficients are not equal but that does not matter.

3. Like terms example:

63

51

51

These two monomials differ in their coefficients.

4. Like terms example:

15aabbc^{2}

51a^{2}b^{2}cc

51a

These two monomials differ in their coefficients.

What are their literal parts?

The literal part of the first monomial

aabbc^{2} =

a^{1 + 1}b^{1 + 1}c^{2} =

a^{2}b^{2}c^{2}

a

a

The literal part of the second monomial

a^{2}b^{2}cc =

a^{2}b^{2}c^{1 + 1} =

a^{2}b^{2}c^{2}

a

a

Their literal parts are the same

15a^{2}b^{2}c^{2}

51a^{2}b^{2}c^{2}

51a

The letters (variables) and their exponents are the same.

See Examples of like terms in math.